In 2023 things will be very different in North Greenwich. Visitors to the area will emerge from the Jubilee line into a lofty winter garden, replete with slim columns, foliage, bars and restaurants.
The station will also have been renamed Greenwich Peninsula.
Peninsula Place, unveiled by Knight Dragon and Mayor Of London Sadiq Khan on Thursday, February 2, will be the centrepiece to the firm’s huge 15,000-home regeneration project. It even resembles a crown.
A 1.4million sq ft citadel, its three towers will be filled with flats, hotel rooms, offices, shops, a theatre, cinema and a performance venue.
Rising to 30 storeys and connected to the Thames via a new foot bridge that acts as a massive sundial aligned to the Greenwich Meridian, the structure will also replace the current Tube and bus station.
At £1billion the Santiago Calatrava-designed building represents a significant chunk of Greenwich Peninsula’s overall £8.4billion budget.
Sadiq, fresh from watching Drake at The O2 the previous evening, said: “This is an exciting regeneration project.
“You’ll have genuinely affordable homes for Londoners side by side with market value and high-end homes as well.
“Tribute should be made to the Royal Borough Of Greenwich, which has done a great job trying to regenerate this part of London that for decades has been neglected.
“Before Knight Dragon got involved we’d had 10 years of inactivity.
“With Peninsula Place you’ll have offices and retail.
“You’ll have a much, much bigger bus station and an improved Tube station in a part of London that will be the envy of not just other parts of this country and Europe but of the whole world.
"One of the first people I met after the Brexit vote last summer was Knight Dragon vice chairman Sammy Lee.
“There was a concern that post-Brexit somehow people would stop investing in London, people would stop coming here.
“I was keen to attract talent and investment to London and Sammy reassured me the commitment Knight Dragon had to London would continue.
“Evidence of their commitment to having a development that’s fit for purpose for the greatest city in the world is asking Santiago to design Peninsula Place.
“Sammy and I were teasing him that now he’s practised around the world he’s now ready to design in London.
“New York, Lisbon and Bilbao, they were rehearsals for the important piece of work he’s about to do here.
“Three words that are proved by this exciting regeneration project are: ‘London is open’.”
Sammy said: “My ambition is for Greenwich Peninsula to be a unique cultural destination for Londoners and visitors to this global city.
“Santiago’s contribution will help ensure that the UK’s biggest regeneration project fulfils its potential to become just that.”
Santiago added: “You can not imagine how important this project is for me.
“Since I was studying to become an architect I’ve always studied the British tradition because it joins engineering and architecture in single buildings.
“I’ve always admired the work, which I think continues to this day with exquisite attention to detail, to materials, to colours.
“With Peninsula Place the client played a crucial role. We went through something like 10 different approaches over the course of a year, trying to understand how a project can dignify and highlight the particularities of this place and of the city.
“What the client is asking me to do is create bridges between the various areas. They need to be treated as welcoming places that give the sense of arrival where people come to meet.
“We are linking water, with asphalt, with trains. We want to create the heart of a neighbourhood so the building has to be a little bit different, to signify that. It’s a single building with a centre point.
“It’s been inspired by my enormous love and devotion to this city.”
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